Last week we provided a fresh look at the AMD Radeon Gallium3D performance using the latest development code for the Linux 3.0 kernel and Mesa 7.11 library. Today we are now looking at the Gallium3D driver performance of the Nouveau driver that is reverse-engineered to support NVIDIA GeForce graphics processors.
Testing in this article is quite simple, like last week's Radeon Gallium3D tests. A NVIDIA GeForce 9800GTX graphics card was tested on NVIDIA's proprietary Linux driver (the 275.09.04 beta release) against the Linux 2.6.38, Linux 2.6.39, and Linux 3.0 (11 June Git) releases with the Mesa 7.11-devel Git as of 11 June. The different kernels is to see whether the Linux 3.0 DRM (Direct Rendering Manager) code for the Nouveau module has affected the performance at all, for this GPU at least. The libdrm and xf86-video-nouveau DDX were also obtained from Git on 11 June.
The rest of the test hardware included an Intel Core i7 990X Extreme Edition "Gulftown", ASRock X58 SuperComputer motherboard, 3GB of system memory, 320GB and Seagate SATA HDD. Ubuntu 10.10 was the base operating system with the GNOME 2.32.0 desktop with Compiz, X.Org Server 1.9.0, GCC 4.4.5, and an EXT4 file-system. Unlike the Radeon driver, the Nouveau driver does not have any swap buffer wait and color tiling X.Org options to toggle for testing.